Thornhill Young Enterprise groups trailblaze at competition

It is never easy to come up with an original idea for a business. However, two groups at Thornhill College in Derry have been trailblazing the way forward in this year’s Young Enterprise.

These two groups used their creativity and ingenuity to look at real problems and figure out a way to solve them.

Terry’s Tea Time, led by Miss Rooney, created an eco-friendly and innovative way of helping families decide what to have for dinner. Many of the creators noted that for many families, dinner time is the main time they get to spend together, so it was incredibly important to make it a fun experience.

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During lockdown, many of the girls in the group saw how families struggled to keep dinner time creative and wanted to invent something to bring some fun to tea time.

A wheel with several segments gives families plenty of options to fill the segments with, and they simply spin the arrow in the middle of the wheel and cook whichever meal it lands on.

The wheels are made from recycled cardboard and will contain a QR code which will link families to a website with a number of recipes to suit any dietary needs. the QR code was also established to cut down paper waste.

Thornhill College Young Enterprise group Terry's Tea Time
Thornhill College Young Enterprise group Terry’s Tea Time

Another important aspect of this initiative is the potential it has in helping children with additional needs who have a difficult relationship with food. It allows them to be more involved and think of dinner times as a game and a prize to be won.

This creation showcases the way forward in environmentally friendly business and the changing roles of recycled materials for future projects.

The second of Thornhill’s Young Enterprise teams is Safe Sippin’, led by Miss McCay, who have designed a drinks covering to protect people’s drinks from potentially being spiked.

These girls, who should have been enjoying going out to their friends’ 18th birthday parties, were suddenly terrified of going out due to the high levels of drink spiking. They wanted to create something that made girls like them feel safer.

This initiative proved so popular that the girls sold out of their Safe Sippin’ covers in 15 minutes. They are currently in the process of restocking their items having had interest from local businesses outside of the school.

The team collaborated with the North West Regional College and Shipquay Fabrics in the design and construction of their covers, with keeping it local a top priority. The team wanted to thank all those both inside and outside the school who made their creation a success.

Thornhill College Young Enterprise group 'Safe Sippin'
Thornhill College Young Enterprise group ‘Safe Sippin’

Their social media page has been shared widely by local female-led Derry business people praising them for their innovative creation. Across the city other establishments have been interested in stocking their drinks caps when they are restocked.

The team have even now won the North West competition of the year and have progressed to the Young Enterprise finals.

The process of Young Enterprise has taught these two fantastic groups to be resilient and patient, and has given them essential skills in taking their ideas into the world.

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